Christine is a broadly-trained primatologist with expertise in social behavior, motivation, and emotion. Her work is grounded in understanding other animals as complex individuals with agency, perspectives, and interests. She is especially interested in how our close primate relatives manage and mitigate conflicts, and associated cognitive and affective capacities like empathy.
Her latest research and teaching engage critically with questions in animal and environmental ethics, particularly in challenging anthropocentric assumptions about other species’ lives. Her work explores the complex relations between human exceptionalism and science—how anthropocentrism “stacks the deck” against other species, biasing the development of hypotheses, the design of experiments, and the evaluation of evidence in a way that favors human abilities. She is the author of the forthcoming book, The Arrogant Ape, which describes how a less anthropocentric approach can change how we see and relate to the more-than-human world.
Webb is currently a Lecturer and Research Associate in Harvard’s Department of Human Evolutionary Biology, and a Visiting Scholar in Utrecht University’s Animal Ecology and Welfare Program. Previously, she held a post-doc at the Living Links Center for the Advanced Study of Ape and Human Evolution at Emory University (2015-18), and a FYSSEN Fellowship at the Institute of Evolutionary Science of Montpellier (2016-17).